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Faces of Courage: A Call to Action

They are part of a club no mother ever wants to join. Their lives have been shattered by gun violence. These mothers have lost children or other family members or been victims themselves. Listen to their heartbreaking stories. Honor them by taking action to protect children, not guns. Call your Senators and Representatives and tell them you support universal background checks, a ban on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.

Rep. Carolyn McCarthy's husband, Dennis, was murdered and her son, Kevin, was shot in the head while traveling home on the Long Island railroad in 1993. Her son barely survived. Rep. McCarthy has been an outspoken advocate for common sense gun safety laws ever since. She supports universal background checks and a ban on assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines.
Dawn Tringas was just 17 years old when she faced gun violence. She survived to become a mother. After the massacre at Sandy Hook, Dawn joined Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America in demanding common sense gun safety laws to make America safer for children.
Nardyne Jefferies lost her only child, her beautiful 16 year old daughter Brishell Jones, in a drive by shooting in 2010. Brishell was killed by bullets from an AK-47. Nardyne comes from a family of law enforcement officers and hunters. She believes we all have to work together to stop the slaughter of innocents.
Sarah Brady's husband, Jim Brady, was shot in the head in 1981 during the attempted assassination of President Ronald Reagan. Shortly after another gun incident with her 5-year-old son shocked her into action and she founded the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. For more than twenty years her courage and advocacy for common sense gun laws have inspired Moms across America.
Loren Lieb is the mother of Joshua Stepakoff who was 6-years-old when he was shot on August 10, 1999 at the North Valley Jewish Community Center in Los Angeles. The white supremacist shooter fired 70 rounds from an assault weapon wounding 3 young children, a teenage, and an office worker. After fleeing the scene, the shooter killed a U.S. postal worker.
Jodi Sandoval lost her 14-year-old son, Noah, to gun violence in Columbus, Ohio on July 5, 2012. A mindful parent, Jodi says, she kept a gun-free home. Her son was visiting a friend who was fooling around with a gun. Although there was no magazine in the gun, unbeknownst to the friend, there was a bullet in the chamber. Now Jodi is wracked with grief and guilt.
Judi Richardson lost her 25 year old daughter, Darien, to gun violence. She was shot by a gun in her bedroom in Portland, Maine in 2010. For Judi Richardson, as for all the mothers who have lost children to gun violence, every Mother's Day is a challenge. Her courageous commitment to speak out comes from a determination to make sure her daughter did not die in vain.
Lori Haas was one of the dozens of parents traumatized by the mass slaughter at Virginia Tech in 2007. Thirty-two died that day. Her daughter was shot twice in the head, but survived. Her courage and determination to prevent gun violence inspires other mothers to speak out.
Ann Wilson's world turned upside down when her youngest son, Daniel, was in the wrong place at the wrong time and was killed by a gun. Five years later, her husband was in the wrong place at the wrong time and was killed by a gun. Today she helps other mothers who lost children to gun violence, and encourages them to speak out.
Kim Russell and her friend Phillip were robbed at gunpoint, then shot by that gun in Atlanta. Kim survived, Phillip did not. Kim has stayed in touch with Phillip's mother. Now a mom herself, Kim joined Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America and began speaking out after the mass murder of 6- and 7-year-olds at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
Janice Dean lost her son, James Dean, to gun violence in Washington, D.C. on February 10th of 2013. She is praying for other mothers who, like her, have lost children to gun violence. Janice Dean is speaking out to stop the slaughter of children, asking lawmakers to make a difference to make America safer.
Mary Kay Mace's only child, Ryanne, was the youngest student murdered during the Valentine's Day massacre at Northern Illinois University in 2008. A psychology major, Ryanne dreamed of becoming a mental health practitioner. Mary Kay was inspired to speak out and lobby for common sense gun laws by the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.
Martha Warner lost her daughter to gun violence in 2004. Her daughter, Liza Ellen Warner, was killed by her estranged husband. He stole a gun, bought some bullets, and broke into the house. Martha Warner is speaking out in her daughter's memory and to strengthen gun safety laws.
Donna Finkelstein's 16-year-old daughter Mindy was a counselor at the North Valley Jewish Community Center in Los Angeles when a white supremacist with a semi-automatic rifle attacked. Mindy was one of five people shot that day including three little boys. Donna and her daughter Mindy have become strong advocates for gun safety laws.
In 2010, Julie Butcher lost her oldest son Mathew in a robbery murder at his workplace in Los Angeles. She says he was a sweet boy, a kind man.
Julia Dunkins lost her husband to gun violence when her son was 4 months old.  Dunkins raised her son by herself and he married. Tragically, when he was 24 years old he was shot and killed leaving two young children behind.
Shanda Smith lost her 14-year-old daughter, Volante, and her 19-year-old son, Rodney, the same moment to gun violence. They were on their way to a church Christmas party. Stopped at a traffic light, they were shot and killed in a case of mistaken identity. Volante was an honor roll student. Rodney, a football scholarship freshman in college was home for Christmas break.  Enough is enough.